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Daycare Center and Family Home Forum>Funshine Express or Enchanted learning
My4SunshineGirlsNY 08:11 AM 05-13-2010
I have been looking into Funshine Express as a lot of you ladies use this and love it. I would only need the Fireflies kit for 2 kids (possible 3..my 17 month old boy comes at 12:15 every day except Tues. where he comes at 10..so he would only get one day to particiapte as my afternoons are naptime then outside play, so I'm still not sure if I will order for 2 or go up to 4 kids).

If I order for only 2 kids I'm looking at $27.50/child per month (with shipping included)...if I order for 3 (have to order 4 kits)..I'm looking at $20/month for 3 children (with 1 unused kit left over). $55-$60/month for me.

So with this few kids, is the kits worth the cost? I know the more kits you order the more value it is, but I don't need that many, so I'm beginning to wonder if it's worth it for what you get? How much craft supplies are included in each kit? Would I be better off going to a craft store and getting all these supplies and finding curriculums online? Is the cost of Funshine mostly conveinence factor?

I also wanted to share this website as it is what our local school uses for some of their activities. It is called enchanted learning and if you become a member it is only $20 for the whole year...there is over 20,000 pages and they are great activities!! I'm definitely subscribing today. It will take printer ink, but I plan on printing one activity and going to a copy machine for copies as it will be cheaper that way. There are free pages on there to try, but if you become a member you will get banner-free pages and a ton more activities.
http://www.enchantedlearning.com/Home.html
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TGT09 09:43 AM 05-13-2010
I wouldn't blame you for the $20 a year at Enchanted Learning but it will absolutely nowhere near touch what you get from Funshine. You get craft supplies for at LEAST 3 crafts a week, not to mention a book every month, worksheets (already printed out), a curriculum guide that shows you day to day and there are 3 themes a month, recipes for fun things to do with the kids, a few learning games (supplies and all).

I only buy it for 2 children as well but will buy the SA supplement for this summer. I would never trade this. :-)
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laundryduchess@yahoo.com 10:06 AM 05-13-2010
have you looked into early start?
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My4SunshineGirlsNY 10:14 AM 05-13-2010
Originally Posted by laundryduchess@yahoo.com:
have you looked into early start?
No, is this a website? I'll google it and check.

Thank you for the input TGT09...makes my decision much easier..I really wanted to go for the Funshine Express, but I didn't know if the material was worth it..sounds like from your reveiw it is...I might give it a 3 month try and see how I like it.
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gbcc 10:46 AM 05-13-2010
I have been having the same problem with this. I will only need 3 as of right now. I wonder if we could split a kit and just make copies of the teacher info that comes?
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melskids 11:01 AM 05-13-2010
i use enchanted learning, gayles preschool rainbow ($20/yr), ccvillage ($7.95/month), kidssoup.com($20/yr),and abcteach.com($45/yr) and the THOUSANDS of other free sites out there, and just make up my own curriculum.
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originalkat 11:16 AM 05-13-2010
Originally Posted by gbcc:
I have been having the same problem with this. I will only need 3 as of right now. I wonder if we could split a kit and just make copies of the teacher info that comes?
You can order an additional Teacher pack for $12.00. The Teacher guides, book, folder games, calendar pieces are all included for that price. If you were going to split it with someone, I would do that because otherwise there would be too much copying to do as the Teacher guide is kind of thick.

If I figured it correctly, if you split it with someone for 6 kids and got an extra Teacher pack it would come out to about $40.00 per month per person. But then you would have to split up all the crafts and the ship it to the other person which would be quite a pain. I am not sure that would be woth it. But I just thought I would type it up as an option since you mentioned it.
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TGT09 11:31 AM 05-13-2010
Don't get me wrong, you still have to provide the basics when doing the provided crafts i.e. crayons, paint, glue, tape etc...

I too started out getting my own craft projects at the store but it quickly escalated into way more money than I wanted to spend.

To me, Funshine is worth it for the craft ideas and supplies alone minus all the other cool stuff you get. :-)
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jen 12:04 PM 05-13-2010
I used to do Funshine Express as well. The quality has gone done quite a bit in the last couple of years. Also, they only provide 12 prepackaged art projects per month...the rest of the projects you have to supply ALL of the materials yourself.

It is convenient as far as planning goes, but I can do 2 or 3 months worth of art projects for $60.
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jen 12:07 PM 05-13-2010
Originally Posted by TGT09:
IYou get craft supplies for at LEAST 3 crafts a week, )

Duh, that is 3 per week!!! It so didn't seem that way when I was doing it. It seemed like I was ALWAYS needing to buy something in addition.
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TGT09 12:35 PM 05-13-2010
I've not had to provide anything for those 3 crafts a week except what I listed....crayons, paint, scissors, tape, glue, things like that. Could be that I just have an over abundance of craft supplies to start off with.
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TGT09 12:37 PM 05-13-2010
Originally Posted by My4SunshineGirlsNY:
No, is this a website? I'll google it and check.

Thank you for the input TGT09...makes my decision much easier..I really wanted to go for the Funshine Express, but I didn't know if the material was worth it..sounds like from your reveiw it is...I might give it a 3 month try and see how I like it.
I would definitely just do a trial and error. It may not fit into your daycare but it fits perfectly into mine. I just didn't have time to search out crafts and then go to the store 10 times through the week when I forgot something....I'm pretty forgetful. This may not be the case with you and you may find it easier to do your own but it's definitely worth a try. ;-)

I also truly enjoy having themes where I can borrow books from the library and do multiple things in a week that go along with one theme.
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My4SunshineGirlsNY 12:42 PM 05-13-2010
Originally Posted by gbcc:
I have been having the same problem with this. I will only need 3 as of right now. I wonder if we could split a kit and just make copies of the teacher info that comes?
I was thinking that too! We should..it would be so much more affordale...I'll give you an Email later.
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My4SunshineGirlsNY 12:55 PM 05-13-2010
Originally Posted by originalkat:
You can order an additional Teacher pack for $12.00. The Teacher guides, book, folder games, calendar pieces are all included for that price. If you were going to split it with someone, I would do that because otherwise there would be too much copying to do as the Teacher guide is kind of thick.

If I figured it correctly, if you split it with someone for 6 kids and got an extra Teacher pack it would come out to about $40.00 per month per person. But then you would have to split up all the crafts and the ship it to the other person which would be quite a pain. I am not sure that would be woth it. But I just thought I would type it up as an option since you mentioned it.
We live 30min. from each other..so we wouldn't have to reship it.
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originalkat 03:56 PM 05-13-2010
Originally Posted by My4SunshineGirlsNY:
We live 30min. from each other..so we wouldn't have to reship it.
Oh, in that case it sounds like a great idea for you guys. I think it is neat that you can order more starter and teacher packs for a pretty affordable price.
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happykidschildcare 10:18 AM 05-14-2010
ive tried funshine, enchanted and early learning. My favorite of all is funshine if you can afford it i would go with that. It comes complete with no having to scramble or print a project. I still use enchanted from time to time, you cant beat the yearly fee.
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HeatherB 10:30 AM 05-14-2010
Look at adventures in learning.. they provide all supplies too Crayons makers, glue craft materials lesson plans.. worksheets, puppets, calender, music books... all monthly!

http://www.ailcurriculum.com/
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TGT09 12:10 PM 05-14-2010
Originally Posted by HeatherB:
Look at adventures in learning.. they provide all supplies too Crayons makers, glue craft materials lesson plans.. worksheets, puppets, calender, music books... all monthly!

http://www.ailcurriculum.com/
I gotta be honest, as much as I love Funshine this looks pretty awesome. I might try the summer curriculum from them just to see how I like it. It's a little more than Funshine though except the summer portion is actually substantially cheaper.
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